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Thursday, June 04, 2009

Quick notes on Obama's speech

No time for a full dissection but here are some troubling parts:
More recently, tension has been fed by colonialism that denied rights and opportunities to many Muslims...
Is he including Israel as one of those colonial states?
So I have known Islam on three continents before coming to the region where it was first revealed.
Revealed is a deliberate word choice to make it appear that Islam is the true religion! "Founded" would be more accurate.
And I consider it part of my responsibility as President of the United States to fight against negative stereotypes of Islam wherever they appear.
Worldwide? Is that the American President's responsibility? I don't think he is too concerned about most other kinds of stereotyping worldwide.
Much has been made of the fact that an African-American with the name Barack Hussein Obama could be elected President.
Now he uses his name to score points; he sure downplayed it during the campaign.
In Ankara, I made clear that America is not – and never will be – at war with Islam. We will, however, relentlessly confront violent extremists who pose a grave threat to our security. Because we reject the same thing that people of all faiths reject: the killing of innocent men, women, and children. And it is my first duty as President to protect the American people.
A majority of Muslims seem to think that killing Israeli women and children are justified. They like to point to imams who decried 9/11 but how many condemned theMercaz HaRav massacre? I'm not aware of a single one.
...it is also undeniable that the Palestinian people – Muslims and Christians – have suffered in pursuit of a homeland. For more than sixty years they have endured the pain of dislocation. Many wait in refugee camps in the West Bank, Gaza, and neighboring lands for a life of peace and security that they have never been able to lead.
And why exactly are there still "refugee" camps in Gaza and the West Bank? Is Israel somehow stopping Palestinian Arabs from leaving these camps and buying homes?

That is in Israel's interest, Palestine's interest, America's interest, and the world's interest.
This may be the first time a sitting American president referred to the Palestinian Arabs as if they already have a country.
Palestinians must abandon violence. Resistance through violence and killing is wrong and does not succeed. For centuries, black people in America suffered the lash of the whip as slaves and the humiliation of segregation. But it was not violence that won full and equal rights. It was a peaceful and determined insistence upon the ideals at the center of America's founding.
Is he comparing Palestinian Arabs to slaves???? And Israelis to white slaveowners????

At the same time, Israelis must acknowledge that just as Israel's right to exist cannot be denied, neither can Palestine's.
See above. How exactly this "right to exist" came about is a bit....murky.

All of us have a responsibility to work for the day when the mothers of Israelis and Palestinians can see their children grow up without fear; when the Holy Land of three great faiths is the place of peace that God intended it to be; when Jerusalem is a secure and lasting home for Jews and Christians and Muslims, and a place for all of the children of Abraham to mingle peacefully together as in the story of Isra, when Moses, Jesus, and Mohammed (peace be upon them) joined in prayer.
PBUH....this is dangerously pandering.

Islam has a proud tradition of tolerance.
Oh, please. That tradition is exclusively when Islam is dominant and they are "tolerant" to people who explicitly accept second-class status.

For instance, in the United States, rules on charitable giving have made it harder for Muslims to fulfill their religious obligation. That is why I am committed to working with American Muslims to ensure that they can fulfill zakat.
I'm not sure what he is talking about here, but it appears that he will loosen up the US rules of what a charity is to include what Muslims consider charity. Holy Land Foundation, anyone?